After all, I’ve been telling people what to read since I was able to recognize words on paper. I was the kid extolling the virtues of “Charlotte’s Web” in the school cafeteria. “Fern saves the runt from being killed,” I told my friends. “And so her father lets her keep him.”And now that Patchett is beyond all the logistics of getting her bookstore up and running, she finds that her greatest pleasure comes from introducing readers to her favorite books, be they new or old ones:
They’ll walk right up to me and say, “I’m looking for a book.” I wait for a minute, thinking surely there’s going to be more to that sentence — “I’m looking for a book I heard about on the radio” or “I’m looking for a book like ‘The Goldfinch’ ” — but often there is nothing else. They just smile up at me, trusting and curious, waiting to follow my instructions. It makes my heart soar.
|Parnassus Books, Nashville|
So now comes the planning bit...which amounts to nothing more than a list of indie bookstores and their locations and hours. Then as I travel (not completely) aimlessly through a dozen or so states during my return to Houston, I will be able to use the list as a heads-up to which bookstores are in the general area.
First store on the new list will be, of course, Ann Patchett's Parnassus Books...